COVID 19: Online Learning So Far


The recent Coronavirus outbreak and resultant self isolation have put schools in an interesting position. Rather than shut down entirely for the foreseeable future, they have switched instead to online learning, and Souhegan is no exception. With this different format for learning comes its own benefits and problems.

Souhegan is using Google Classroom to organize the classes, post assignments for the day, and take attendance. Zoom is also being used to hold classes face to face, whether for quick check-ins, help on the assignments, or for lectures. Students have been noticing some issues with Zoom. At times Zoom will freeze or, in some cases, kick someone out when their internet doesn’t have a strong enough connection. People also tend to speak less in-class video calls than when in person.

    In some cases, the curriculum or direction the class is taking has had to change. Sarah Tupper, a sophomore in band, commented that the massive amounts of lag from everyone loudly playing instruments at the same time made band class more challenging. She said that “Instead of focusing more on full musical pieces, we are working more on understanding music theory.” Similarly, AP classes have had to adjust the material they are teaching, especially with the shortened time frame. The amount of material required for the exams has also decreased. The AP exams are still taking place, however, they are going to be online and only 45 minutes, rather than the original three hours. Review lessons for AP classes are also available to study for the exams. Undoubtedly, other classes have also had to adjust to the change. 

     With the online classes and lack of afterschool activities such as sports, band, or theatre, students have more free time. Many students have taken up hobbies such as needle felting and painting, while others have been playing more video games. People are also taking advantage of the nice weather and going on walks. Going outside is good for you, even if only for ten minutes, and might help you to keep a little sanity after being cooped up at home all day.

Almost everyone, while understanding why we are doing online classes and appreciating the benefits which come with it, miss going to school. Being cooped up is making more than a few stir crazy.

 Going outside, talking with friends, and giving yourself something to do can help pass the time and break up an otherwise monotonous day. One problem that many people seem to have is that they don’t have a table to work at. Instead, many are working on their sofas or beds, and while they are comfortable, there isn’t a hard surface to work on. There are still a lot of people who are lucky enough to have a table where they won’t constantly be disturbed by people walking behind them.

Something which many people noticed was that the lack of structure due to being at home was making them less productive and less likely to do the work. Setting up a schedule, reminders for when classes are, and setting up your day has helped some people to make sure they get their work done. Having somewhere to set up a workspace has also helped to keep people focused.

Socializing has also been an issue. Being stuck with the same people with nowhere to go gets tiring, and being unable to hang out with your friends is getting to people. Instead of meeting people in person, students are talking with their friends through discord, doing video chats, and other social media. 

There is a Souhegan discord server run by a group of students where you can talk with other students and get help. The school has also created a class on Google Classroom called Community Connection where you can connect with other people and learn some new hobbies. There is also a Google classroom for the Library where you can get access to a bunch of online resources. You should have gotten some emails about the classrooms if you want more information on those. The invite link to the school discord is, and the Community and Library class codes are 7p7vaa4 and k7pxqe6 respectively.